Never a company to leave bases uncovered for long, Shimano continues to round out its 11-speed road wheel offerings with the new budget-friendly WH-RS330 road hoops. These alloy wheels retail for $400 and are claimed to balance rigidity, durability and weight, which is claimed to be 2,024 grams (845 front, 1,179 rear).
These 30mm wheels feature oversized alloy nipples and are compatible with 10- and 11-speed road cassettes. They also use what Shimano calls its 2:1 OptBal lacing pattern, where the front wheel has 16 radial spokes, while the rear uses 21 spokes, 14 drive side and 7 non-drive side, which is designed to enhance rigidity and durability.
The new hoops also incorporate Shimano's cycling specific cup-and-cone bearings, which are designed and manufactured in-house, and use a cup shaped outer race that allows the bearing to displace axial and radial loads more effectively. This tool free digital cone bearing adjustment system is better than traditional industrial bearing designs, says Shimano, because the later creates uneven distribution of load, putting more stress on the bearings.
For an animated explanation of this concept, check out this video:
httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOFh2W609-MMany people wonder why Shimano uses the cup and cone system instead of industrial bearings. Watch this video for an explanation.
For more information visit bike.shimano.com.